|Scientific Name:||dispar malienis|
|Length:||10 inches||8 inches|
|Weight:||200 grams||175 grams|
|Maturity:||4 years||4 years|
Lifestyle and Lifespan
|Lifespan in the Wild:||20 years|
|Lifespan in Captivity:||20 years|
|Northern Africa;Saharan Desert|
|Status in the Wild:|
Uromastyx inhabit a range stretching through most of North Africa, the Middle East and across south-central Asia and into India. This area spreads across 5000 miles and 30 countries. They are commonly known as a spiny-tailed lizard, uros or Dabb lizards. Just as the name implies this lizards tail is covered in spiny scales which can be used for self-defense. This species is found in Mali, Africa.
There are approximately 15 different species in the genus Uromastyx, some have been moved to Genus Saara.
To aid in camouflage, they exhibit an overall backdrop of brown with spots, speckles or swirls of varying color. A very spiky tail used to swipe at predators, paired with on open mouth hissing, are there first line of defense. As a result of high concentrations of salt bearing plants, this species has glands in its nostrils used for eliminating extra salt without eliminating water.
Desert & Rocky outclifts
Approximately 10 to 100 individuals can live in one area that covers 2 square miles.
Herbivorous; as a jouvinal consumes invertebrates
Mostly herbivorous, uros do consume invertebrates in juvenile stages of life. This species is prey to may birds, snakes, wolves and monitor lizards thus being a very important food source in a sparse dessert habitat.
Activity and Behavior
As a diurnal species this lizard is often found basking outside it's burrow. Some species of Uromastyx will hibernate during the winter for up to 5 months, and will aestivate during summer months when there are drought-like conditions.
Using burrows and rocky cover to thermoregulate is key to surviving in such extreme conditions.
This species is highly territorial and will aggressively defend burrows, even hatchlings will attack oneanother.
Breeding season happens once a year around April, egg laying usually happens one month after. A male will court a female with a series of head movements and push-up motions. Females do guard the burrow in which she has laid her eggs.
6-23, offspring will often stay in their mothers burrow for a few weeks to a few months, while mother is keeping guard.
Currently only regulated by CITIES, and are listed in Appendix II as least concern. They are not evaluated by IUCN.
This species is often misidentified, which makes regulation very difficult. These animals have been trapped for food and medicines, which then led to pet trade.
Exhibit and Educate
How You Can Help
Make good pet choices and always find out where your potential pets come from and what do they need to be healthy.
To aid in thermoregulation euros can adjust scale color. When it is cool weather, scales will dull and darken, in warmer weather the scales lighten.
University of Michigan Museum of Zoologlogy, Animal Diversity Web; Uromastyx acanthinura Updated Feb 2011
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